Before we get started with this week’s fishing report, I’d like to thank everyone for reading – and thank our entire community for the amazing response to the new website I’ve received our first week. I’m humbled and exceedingly thankful for the many wonderful e-mails I’ve received, plus the number of people reading our articles and following the site on social media.
Obviously, it’s a no-brainer for me to bring the Fishing Friday column along with me here to Shorebeat after starting it at Patch back in 2010. I’ve always received positive feedback, and I’m hoping all of my loyal readers will find the column here and get in touch. I’d also like to keep the tradition from the old site going in featuring photos of locals with the column each week. So don’t be shy – brag about your catch a little! Send me photos of your catches of the day to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now, on to the fishing report:
I’m fresh off some wisdom teeth removal surgery, so I haven’t fished at all this week, but from the reports I’ve seen the action remains steady in the Ocean County area. It’s arguably the busiest time of year for fishing, but most of us are going for the staples – fluke, bluefish and offshore action.
In the suds, “small the keeper size” fluke are being nailed at essentially all of the local beaches, according to the folks at The Dock Outfitters in Seaside Heights.
In the bay, “crabbing is a bit off since the full moon and snappers are still keeping the bay fisherman busy,” John from the shop said. Metals and (my personal favorite) poppers work great for the snappers, which are being caught in the usual haunts such as the Mantoloking and Route 37 bridges, as well as the mouth of the Point Pleasant Canal in the Manasquan River. There might be an occasional snapper making an appearance near the Route 70 bridge in the Manasquan as well.
Nighttime fishing in the surf has anglers keeping busy with plenty of brown sharks and cownose rays. The reports from everyone and everywhere, including Grumpy’s Tackle in Seaside Park, seem to agree on the after-dark action. Obviously, be careful with the sharks and the rays, but each provides an interesting kind of fight and certainly produce an entertaining evening.
During the daytime, fluke’s the word at local ocean fishing beaches as well as for those in boats fishing the reefs, Mario from Murphy’s Hook House in Toms River said in a report this week.
“The fluke bite off the beach continues to improve as well with a bucktail tipped with Gulp 4″ swimming mullet in chartreuse or pearl white,” the report said.
In the ocean, those who weren’t fishing for fluke were hooking up with other species. Sea bass, ling and cod were being brought over the rail of the Dauntless out of Point Pleasant Beach, Capt. Willie from the boat reported this week. The catches were holding pretty steady at 10-25 a man, he said. The boat’s nighttime anglers are mixing it up with blues and bottom fishing.
On a small-ish note of bad news, I’ve heard the blowfish bite so far this season has been terribly slow, so for those looking to get into that fishery, call around and check with some of the local tackle shops before making the trip in the boat down to the BI/BB markers and guzzling a lot of $4/gallon gas in the process. The bite could turn on at any time, though, so if you’re planning a Tices Shoal trip this weekend, perhaps some prospecting mid-bay could be in order.
As I mentioned above, send those catch photos to email@example.com, and keep in touch with any tips we can use in future columns.
Tightlines, and glad to be back!